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Otto, Frei Paul

Frei Paul Otto – Atelier Frei Otto Warmbronn

Engineering Specialties: (1)
Architectural Design
Branched Construction
Convertible Construction
Net Construction
Pneumatic Construction
Suspended Construction
Tensile Fabric Construction
Space Frames
Structural Efficiency
Energy Efficient Habitats

Spotlight: Frei Paul Otto

Frei Otto is an architect, architectural theorist, and engineer. (1) He was born in Siegmar, currently part of Chemitz, in 1925. Before Otto was drafted into WWII as a fighter pilot, he studied Architecture in Berlin. He was then held in a French POW camp where he started experimenting with tents for shelter. Otto studied engineering at the Technische Unversitat in Berlin from 1948 to 1950. He then earned his doctorate in tensioned construction in 1954. (2)
Otto founded the famous Institute for Lightweight Structures at the University of Stuttgart in 1964 and led the Institute till his retirement. He is a noted designer for the revival and design of the tent as a structural form and for exploring complex shapes through models such as soap films and wire models. (3) Otto is still active as an architect and engineer and is an honorary member of American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Royal British Institue of Architects (RIBA). (1)

Selected Projects:

German Pavillion – Montreal, Canada

Olympiapark Roof – Munich, Germany

Tuwaiq Palace – Saudi Arabia

Japan Pavilion, EXPO 2000 – Hannover, Germany

Stuttgart Highspeed Railway Station – Stuttgart, Germany

(1) “Frei Otto,” Architectural Engineers of the 20th and 21st Century: The University of Texas at Austin, research by Cynthia Hua.
(2) Archinform – Prof. Dr.-Ing. Frei Otto
(3) Art Encyclopedia – Oxford Grove Art: Frei Otto


Written by Laurel Johnson

January 27, 2011 at 1:04 am

Posted in Engineers